Kept…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Psalm 12

To the choirmaster: according to The Sheminith. A Psalm of David. Save, O LORD, for the godly one is gone; for the faithful have vanished from among the children of man.

 Everyone utters lies to his neighbor; with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.

 May the LORD cut off all flattering lips, the tongue that makes great boasts,

 those who say, “With our tongue we will prevail, our lips are with us; who is master over us?”

 “Because the poor are plundered, because the needy groan, I will now arise,” says the LORD; “I will place him in the safety for which he longs.”

 The words of the LORD are pure words, like silver refined in a furnace on the ground, purified seven times.

 You, O LORD, will keep them; you will guard us from this generation forever.

 On every side the wicked prowl, as vileness is exalted among the children of man.

 

A wicked and perverse generation…scripture says elsewhere. But we do not have to participate in it. We live at this time but we live in Christ and that makes a difference. We are kept by His Word.

The words of the LORD are pure words, like silver refined in a furnace on the ground, purified seven times.

 You, O LORD, will keep them; you will guard us from this generation forever.

 

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“There are others I will gather…”

 

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

 

Isaiah 56:812; 57:1-2

 

The Lord GOD, who gathers the outcasts of Israel, declares, “I will gather yet others to him besides those already gathered.”

All you beasts of the field, come to devour— all you beasts in the forest.

His watchmen are blind; they are all without knowledge; they are all silent dogs; they cannot bark, dreaming, lying down, loving to slumber. The dogs have a mighty appetite; they never have enough. But they are shepherds who have no understanding; they have all turned to their own way, each to his own gain, one and all.

“Come,” they say, “let me get wine; let us fill ourselves with strong drink; and tomorrow will be like this day, great beyond measure.”

The righteous man perishes, and no one lays it to heart; devout men are taken away, while no one understands. For the righteous man is taken away from calamity; he enters into peace; they rest in their beds who walk in their uprightness.

The Lord does the gathering. We are the workmen – we share our knowledge of Him; then He does the gathering, He draws them into Himself. Those who should be watching, warning, seeing the signs and sharing the information, the warning are instead complacent, comfortable in their place of duty, sleeping, missing the signs and then saying all is well.

 

Those shepherds, entrusted with the watch over the sheep, sleep, do not understand and love their own comforts, lack the desire and will to do the work of the shepherd; therefore they are left behind for their focus is not on the sheep but on their own well-being. And so they say all is good when it is not, the righteous who see and know leave and no one notices the back door’s swinging.

Jesus said we will worship in spirit and in truth. We do not need a physical place to begin worship. We will see, understand and worship in the truth of the times. There are those who see, who understand and they are being gathered to a place of peace in the Lord, a place without boundaries, a place of understanding and truth. There are those who know who God is and what He says; they know what He can do; they know His Word will not return void but will accomplish what it sets out to do. They know what He says about them and what He says they can do. Their strength is drawn from His strength and spiritual bread. His Word abides within them and is active within them. They have no need of a physical structure and they know the truth of which He speaks.

Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

consequences bring change…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Isaiah 13:19-22

And Babylon, the glory of kingdoms,
    the splendor and pomp of the Chaldeans,
will be like Sodom and Gomorrah
   when God overthrew them.

It will never be inhabited
   or lived in for all generations;
no Arab will pitch his tent there;
       no shepherds will make their
     flocks lie down there.

But wild animals will lie down there,
      and their houses will be full of howling creatures;
There ostriches will dwell,
          and there wild goats will dance.
Hyenas will cry in its towers,
        and jackals in the pleasant palaces;
its time is close at hand
              and its days will not be prolonged.

What can we take away from this? When we are so full of ourselves we no longer recognize or give credit to our Creator, we face the consequences of our actions, attitudes, words and deeds. Those consequences were told us at the very beginning of creation. We lose everything even when we think we have gained everything. Our only hope lies in Christ and Him alone. We die with Him to this world and rise with Him to new life. And the new begins a change even in the old. Our desires change, our view of life changes, we treat one another with love and respect, we honor our God at all times and begin to see that in all things we are being taught by Him. We can live in the middle of death. We can love in the midst of hate. We can grow while others diminish. And it isn’t our doing; it is the Lord!

Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

Seeking…

Seeking to know God;

not just of Him.

Seeking to realize His constant presence;

not just the evidence that He has been there.

Seeking to understand how who He is and what He does impacts us;

not just awareness of circumstances past, present, future.

Seeking confirmation of His involvement in our affairs, our selves;

not just words spoken by others whether in prayer, song or message.

Seeking intimate relationship not unlike that shared by husband and wife, parent and child;

not just lip service, effort and works.

Seeking the genuine love of God manifested in our beings and consciousness;

not just empty desire met by the stuff of creation.

Seeking to know God.

-gracie

Live for? Stress? NO!

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

II Corinthians 5:1-21

  For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.   For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling,   if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked.   For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened—not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.  So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord,  for we walk by faith, not by sight.  Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him.   For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.  Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others. But what we are is known to God, and I hope it is known also to your conscience. We are not commending ourselves to you again but giving you cause to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast about outward appearance and not about what is in the heart.  For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you.   For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died;  and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.   From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer.   Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.  All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.   Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

We are not bound to this world.  We do not have to invest in this place for we are of a heavenly place once we have accepted and received what God has done for us.  We then live for what is eternal, and that is spiritual.  It is a mind-set change that can relieve a lot of stress.

  “… Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us….” 

Our purpose in life has changed.  Check to see if the stress we feel is based upon our own desires, fears, wants or those of others around us.  It won’t come from the One who gives us peace.  We can show that peace in all we do and say.  That will be the message from God to the rest of our world that He loves them and desires the same for them.

“I believe and so I speak…”

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

II Corinthians 4:18

 Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart.  But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God.  And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing.   In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.  For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.  For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.  

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.  We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair;  persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;  always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.  For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.   So death is at work in us, but life in you. 

Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak,   knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.  

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.   For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,  as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

…I believed and so I spoke…

  “…having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart…

Do we stand on this?  We are not to be silent concerning the things of the kingdom of God.  We are not to lose heart when we face opposition.  The climate toward Christ is changing in our world; God said once  “Let light shine our of darkness,”  and it was so.

We can carry that light given by Christ; shine it into the darkness of this day.  Bring hope to the drowning unbeliever.  This is our charge.  Blessed be the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Believe and speak…

Let the spirit grow…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

I Corinthians 15:35-49

  But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?”   You foolish person! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies.   And what you sow is not the body that is to be, but a bare kernel, perhaps of wheat or of some other grain.   But God gives it a body as he has chosen, and to each kind of seed its own body.   For not all flesh is the same, but there is one kind for humans, another for animals, another for birds, and another for fish.  There are heavenly bodies and earthly bodies, but the glory of the heavenly is of one kind, and the glory of the earthly is of another.   There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for star differs from star in glory.   So is it with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable.   It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power.   It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.   Thus it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit.   But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual.   The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven.   As was the man of dust, so also are those who are of the dust, and as is the man of heaven, so also are those who are of heaven.   Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven.   I tell you this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.   Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,   in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.   For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality.   When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”   “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?”   The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.   But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.   Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

We learn from the seed that is sown.  We have been sown as seed in the natural to fill the earth and with our acceptance of the sacrifice and message of Christ we are sown as spiritual seed to fill heaven.  What a picture!  Blessed be the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.

“…  But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual.  …”

So it can be said that we are natural beings having a spiritual experience or when after accepting Christ we are spiritual beings having a natural experience.  By this verse the natural comes first, then the spiritual.  We are physical beings first and are reborn as spiritual beings.  A transformation begins to take place at rebirth and the physical diminishes and the spiritual grows.  If not, we need to consider our stunted growth.  Are we receiving the nourishing Word of God as regularly as we receive our daily ration of natural food?  If we are stunted in growth we have ourselves to blame.  Do not starve the spiritual self.  Sit at the table of God and be fed.  Be immersed in the Word of God, be fed by the Holy Spirit, drink of His spiritual waters and experience the spiritual growth that follows.  There is time in every day for our natural meals and there is time for our spiritual meals.  Weed out the junk food…both physical and spiritual that would eat up our time.  Let the Spirit rise within us each day more and more.